Stoneware bartmann jug or bellarmine

The kilns at Frechen near Cologne specialised in producing jugs and bottles with mottled brown salt glaze. They were decorated with face-masks and badges. In Britain the masks are often called Bellarmines in the belief that they satirized the Roman Catholic Cardinal Bellarmine. In fact such masks had been made long before his time. With the passage of time the style of the face-mask becomes increasingly grumpy. This drinking jug was made at Frechen in the period around 1540-80. It displays on the neck the traditional mask of a bearded man (Bartmann). It is also decorated with a central frieze of classical ornament within which are winged figures holding small medallions, flanked by alternating masks in roundels and acanthus leaves.

Object Summary

Accession Loan No.
Collection Class
Exeter archaeology
Collection Area Region
Northern Europe
Collector Excavator
Exeter Museums Archaeological Field Unit
potteryFrechen stoneware
Common Name
stoneware bartmann jug or bellarmine
Simple Name
Period Classification
Post Medieval (1500-1750)
Production Year Low
Production Year High

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Frechen ware bellarmine jug